Monday, October 31, 2011

Thailand: Day 3

Gabe and I couldn't wait to explore the city of Bangkok, so we set an early morning wake-up call at 6am and learned quite quickly what Thailand humidity was like.  Cool and collected and then within seconds of being outside ... hot, very hot.  Words can't describe how sticky it felt at a whopping 85 degrees.


Speaking of temperature, I took my first shower with an electric shower (pictured below).  I had read many reviews of travels saying they were disappointed in the hotels water temperature, so I just thought it was expected for the shower to be cooler than the one I am use to ... BUT, I didn't read the machine to notice you have to push a button for it to heat the water, which happens instantly.  I advised Gabe that the water was pretty chilly, and his brilliant self got it working like it should.  I guess that's what I get for showering first.  I laugh about it now, but it was the quickest shower I've ever taken LOL!


The BTS skytrain worked like a champ, and plopped us directly in the city just three blocks from out next hotel.  Ohh, the Pullman King Power!  I loved every bit of this hotel from the refreshing drinks upon arrival and checkin process where we were to not get up while the friendly gal took care of the rest.  The Thai attentiveness was unlike anything we've ever seen.



And, I owe all the success to TripAdvisor and Agoda (hotel booking in Asia) because we were thoroughly impressed with not only our first hotel but especially our second.  It was just incredible to see the grounds of this place.  Check out that pool!!!   :)


Off to see the sights ...
Yes, I'm glistening from the 10ft walk to the TukTuk

First stop, street food!!!  
This was one of the things we were most looking forward to as I had read all about it.  One might wonder how sanitary it is or how long it has been sitting out, etc but we went with our gut (*I had Imodium, Pepto, and antibiotics for backup).  Then, we had to go by looks as the gal didn't speak really any English.  I later got Gabe eating his meal on video as it was SO spicy and he was sweating profusely from the kick and gulping water.  He said it was worth it though, but it would have been equivalent to like 10star in the states!


Chao Phraya River, which runs though Bangkok and we took to get to 
The Grand Palace - very dark muddy brownish water


Feeding the birds was wild!

The famous Khoa San Road - Backpackers area

Gabe checking out his options - a dish of Phad Thai $2!!

Gabe said the BEST Thai of the trip (thus far at least, ha!)

Cooling off with a Thai beer

Loving it!

Now, he has moved on to waffles.  
I felt like we were at the carnival and he had to try EVERYTHING :)

Are we really in Thailand, this place is incredible :)


And to finalize our second night in Bangkok, we grabbed dinner at a local spot that apparently was THE place for Westerns to meet their Thai ladies.  We sadly watched probably 20 transactions take place, and honestly makes you sick.  Very eye opening for us ...


Next up, day 3 continued at The Grand Palace 
as it needed a post entirely for itself!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Getting to Thailand: Day 1&2

***These next handful of posts regarding Thailand will be meant especially for us and family:  My plan is to document all the ins and outs of our trip so we can look back on them later and reminisce our trip oversees.


The Seattle Smith's pulled an "ALL-NIGHTER" to get our bodies acclimated as much as possible to the Thailand time zone prior to our flight leaving at 2pm.  It was the funniest memory looking back on it now as I type this considering Gabe and I brewed coffee at almost midnight to make it through the wee hours.  I must give huge credit to Gabe for this idea as it really worked brilliantly, and something I wish we did last year when we traveled to Australia.  It was so important to us to get our body clocks adjusted, so we wouldn't be dead beat tired once arriving.


Dotted my i's, crossed my t's regarding trip planning, now we are just besides ourselves with excitement as our journey to Thailand begins.  Hubs and I each packed in ONE normal size carry on suitcase each for ease of travel along with a backpack for Gabe and shoulder-bag for myself.  I still can't believe we condensed so for a 16day trip!!


There SHE is - We flew Asiana Airlines

Our first leg was the longest to Seoul Icheon, a 12hr nonstop!

Jumped in head first with Asian food already :)
and I'll resist the urge to post the many other airplane meals I took

Trying their local Korean beer

We landed at Seoul Incheon and couldn't believe the size of this airport as it is one of the largest and busiest airports in the world.  And I must mention, it has a golf course, spa, private sleeping rooms, ice skating rink, a casino, indoor gardens, and a Museum of Korean Culture.  Say WHAT!!


And, one of the most interesting things we noticed at the airport and not any other time throughout our trip ... was couples in matching outfits.  I am not sure if it is only common in Korea, but after the 30th couple in 2hrs, I had to sneakily document it.  Being a tourist, I can now do things like this!



We arrived in Bangkok around midnight at the Survarnabhumi Airport - the 3rd busiest in Asia.  To say we were overwhelmed is an understatement as there was a lot going on at once.  First goal was to get their currency, Thai Bhat, and our debit card wouldn't work at the ATM.  Secondly, we were clueless on where to catch our pre-arranged shuttle with not a lot of help with the language barrier.  Yes ... the adventure begins, and we loved every bit of it!!!!  



Finally, after 24 hours of travel, customs, and a shuttle down many many dark alleys ... we made it to our quaint little hotel.  I didn't get to snap a picture, so here is one from their website.  We chose to stay by the airport at Floral Shire and trek into the city in the light the following day.  It would serve it's purpose solely for 5hrs of sleep and then we had Bangkok exploring to do!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

TinyPrints

Tiny Prints is following suit by sharing the holiday spirit and giving away Christmas cards to bloggers.  How great is that!!!  Be sure to check out their site and fill out this form, then someone will contact you within a week.  

I personally love their cards and am really excited for this offer!  YAY :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Weeding through

As I weed through 1400 photos from Asia, 
I'm already thinking 'which one will I choose for our Christmas card!'

It's unbelievable to think it's already that time of year to start shopping, traveling, and creating holiday memories.  I must say, Shutterfly makes it super easy, convenient, and the end result is always exactly what I expected.  And, I can't wait to use them again this year, as I was really happy with our experience last year using them.

I am loving either of these thus far ....



And, I am even more anxious to compile our trip into a photobook!
Maybe hubs will be in charge of that.


Do you blog?!
Want 25 free cards this holiday season? 
Register here:http://goo.gl/DDw7Q.
*I will pick three winners, so don't forget to comment on this post!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Missed this place

How has this month flown by?!

Well, I had no intent to take this much time away from my blog, but it has been very needed to get back into our routines.  Funny how life continues on when sometimes you just want it to pause at certain moments in time.  I really am so excited to document our stories and share about our most recent travels, and I promise to start that this week.



It's an overwhelming feeling coming back to the states, to to the place you call home, to recognize how beyond blessed we are.  And, it doesn't get more surreal than spending time in a developing country to get a little wake up call that the stresses that weigh me down are often so trivial.  I'm thankful, so thankful!


Hope my sweet readers haven't gone far ...

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